As it stands right now, the Yankees will go into opening day with the following rotation: CC Sabathia, A.J. Burnett, Andy Pettitte and Javier Vazquez. Not bad for the first four. But the number five spot remains open.
The Yankees have choices. They can go with Joba, they can go with Hughes, or they could slip in Serigo Mitre, who just yesterday signed a one-year $850,000 deal, according to the Associated Press.
If you have read anything I have written, you will notice a hatred of mine for the idea of putting Joba in the rotation. Hughes is a better starter and Joba is a far better reliever. So it seems pretty simple doesn’t it? Just put Hughes in the rotation and Joba in the bullpen. It would work as both a long term and shor term solution. But, the ridiculous Yankee coaching staff philosophy has me backed in a corner.
First off, let’s just remove Mitre, who most certainly does not deserve a spot over Hughes or Joba.
Who should be the fifth starter for the Yankees?(polling)
But back to the issue. Just as the Yankees had a “Joba Rule” thing in effect, you can bet your dollar they would have some “Hughes Rules” as well. Which makes me very skeptical. There is no doubt that you can attribute Chamberlains atrocious starting pitching to the fact that he was constantly on a pitch count. It made him always think about the pitch count, which took his focus away from being aggressive.
In 2010, the wheels would be off for Joba, so maybe he would be a better starter. I’m afraid that the same thing that happened to Joba will happen to Hughes, should they put him in the rotation.
But either way, you go with the better option. Like I said, Hughes is a better starter, and Chamberlain is a better reliever. Long term, Hughes can be the next Pettitte, and Chamberlain can be the next Rivera (maybe a bit worse.) You might as well set up for that now, rather than screwing stuff up. ⧫
Bottom line: With Bruney and Coke gone and left field taken care of, the Yankees need pitching, and lots of it. With the bullpen thin, Chamberlain and Hughes need to stay there. So, as the rotation stands right now, there are only three guys there. Cashman has hinted that Lackey is too high of a price, so lets take a look at a smaller investment: Kelvim Escobar.
- He will come pretty cheap.
- He has a 4.15 ERA in 12 seasons.
- He has pitched in Anaheim, so he is used to big games.
- He has postseason experience.
- He is pretty young at age 33.
- He has started over 200 games in his career.
- He isn’t a type A or B, so the Yankees won’t lose any draft picks.
- There are better options on the free agent market.
- He was injured last year and had very limited playing time.
- He walked 7.2 batters per nine innings last season.
Chat or Chuck?
Chat. With three accomplished and reliable starters in Sabathia, Burnett and Pettitte, a big game ace pitcher, such as Lackey, is just unnecesary. Escobar can be a reliable end of the rotation pitcher. Like I said, the Yankees need pitching. Every option is important, and Escobar is a very good option.
Hes the one we have all heard about. The most prized possession of the 2009-2010 off season. After a shaky ending in his time in St. Louis, Holliday is up in the air and ready to sign a big long term deal.
Age/Type FA: 29/A
Career (6 Seasons): .318 BA .933 OPS 152 HR 1030 H
Best Season (2007): .340 BA 216 H 137 RBI
- He led the league in hits, batting average, RBI’s, and doubles in 2007.
- He will only be 30 years old at the beginning of next season.
- He is consistent, hitting over .300 in his past five seasons.
- The Yankees need an outfielder with the absence of Damon and/or Matsui.
- He wants to play on the east coast.
- He has experience in the postseason, including the world series.
- He is a type A free agent and the Yankees will need to give up high draft picks again.
- He won’t be cheap and will demand a long term contract.
Chat or Chuck?:
Chat. This is the guy the Yankees need. This is the guy that can make the difference. Lets face it, Damon and Matsui will not be on the Yankees together next year, and the Yankees need to fill that hole. Holliday will make this team younger, and can be part of a core that will become a dynasty. The combination of Holliday, Teixeira, A-Rod, Sabathia, Chamberlain, Hughes, Cano, Burnett, and Cabrera looks nice for the next five years.
The Yankees have made it clear that there first priority is a starting pitcher. Having said that, the Yankees will go aggresivley after someone to fill that spot and will then come aggressively after Holliday later in the off season, with a big, long term deal.
Cold Springs, NY
Good question. Of all of the big Yankee free agents — such as Damon and Matsui — little attention is being given to a player that, for a lot of the year, came up in conversation a lot.
To answer your question, it’s very tough to predict what the Yankees will do. All I can say is that the Yankees are very high on Molina and his defensive abilities; starting him in the World Series over Posada will show you that. Obviously, they think he is extremely important to their huge investment in A.J. Burnett, so in that regard, I would say they would bring him back. Plus the fact that he wouldn’t be very expensive.
On the other hand, the Yankees have very openly said that they want to get younger and more athletic, and in that regard, Cervelli would be the obvious choice.
As for me, I would like to see them show some confidence in Cervelli. Obviously, Molina is one of the best defensive catchers in the league, but Cervelli is certainly not a liability behind the plate. As Molina plays a huge factor for Burnet, Cervelli actually plays as a huge factor for an even bigger investment in C.C. Sabathia. When C.C. threw to Cervelli, opposing hitters hit just .195 as opposed to .233 with Molina and .262 with Posada.
We also have to consider offense. Molina has really become a liability in that regard. This season, Molina hit .217 and Cervelli hit .298. Each had just one homer.
In the end, neither is a huge difference maker, but both have their advantages. Molina helps A.J. and is a better defensive catcher while Cervelli helps C.C. and is a better offensive catcher. To me, what it comes down to is that Cervelli is a younger player with more potential, and that always proves to be the better choice.
’09 Yanks nab 27th World Championship.
On December 12th, 2008, A.J. Burnett signed an $82.5 million contract with the Yankees. I sent an email to my dad who as at work with the link to the article on the signing. My dad replied by saying, “don’t count your chickens until the eggs hatch.”
327 days and 28 million seconds later, the Yankees passed around their 27th World Series trophy, for the first time in nine years. From CC’s horrible start on opening day, to A-Rod’s walk off in the fifteenth inning against the Red Sox, the Yankees have climbed every mountain, jumped every hurdle and now stand atop every team in Major League Baseball.
“You realize how difficult it is to get here,” Yankees captain Derek
Jeter said. “I never lost sight of the fact that it’s very difficult to
get to the World Series, let alone to win one. You realize and remember
how hard it is.”
“This is what the Steinbrenner family has strived for, year after year
— to deliver to the city of New York,” Yankees manager Joe Girardi
said. “To be able to deliver this to the Boss, the stadium that he
created and the atmosphere around here, it’s very gratifying to all of
Probably most gratifying to Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez. The king of
baseball has now sealed his resume. Alex Rodriguez has now won a
championship and is now the true champion that we all know him to be.
Andy Pettitte stepped up big for the Yankees on three days rest, and in possibly his final game in pinstripes, helped get his sixth ring.
“This is what you set out to do when you go to Spring Training,”
Pettitte said. “It’s a great feeling to be able to accomplish with the
rest of the team. This is what you play for.”
Poll of the Day:
Which of the following free agents should the Yankees resign? (Select as many as you want)(opinion)
Series resumes Wednesday in New York with Yanks up 3-2.